end-of-year ritual

Good endings make for better beginnings

properfarewell

2014: A love letter

Tonight we will cross the threshold into 2015.  Here are a few ideas for closing the door on 2014, and feeling complete. 

What are you most proud of this year?

Make a list of what you are celebrating.
What did you do well?
What insights did you have — however small?

List any positive changes you made — however small.  Small steps and incremental insights might seem too subtle to name.  But even the tiniest tidbit of progress needs to be celebrated.

By nurturing even the seemingly small seeds of beginnings, they begin to grow and flower and bear fruit.

One small thing I am celebrating this year is that I took good care of my dog, Mr. French. I fed him, walked him, groomed him, and took care of his health needs. I did a good job in this area. (See, nothing is too small or inconsequential to be on this list).

One accomplishment I am naming is that I showed up.  I showed up for my own yoga practice, my work, and my family. I did the best I could.  (I bet you did too!)

But even if you didn’t, there is always forgiveness.

What are you going to forgive this year?

This includes:

What are you going to forgive yourself for?

Forgiveness is a powerful thing — and an act of love. Are you willing to show up for yourself with an attitude of love and cut yourself some slack?

I have put a lot of things on this list.  I forgive myself for the times I was irritable and impatient. And for the times I tried so hard to control things when letting go would have served the situation better.

What are you going to forgive life for?

Can you consider forgiving life (the universe, God, fate, whomever or whatever) for giving you things you do not want?  Can you consider cultivating some small attitude of forgiveness that things did not go the way you wanted them to?

Note: This may be a very short list indeed! This can be deep, tough stuff.  For me, the best I can do with this one is to say that I am willing to consider listing the things I would like to be able to forgive.

What are you letting go of?

List the things from 2014 that you did let go of…or things that you want to leave behind.

For some of you, this might be something as big as a relationship that is ending. Or a job. Or a role you’ve always played, but are no longer wanting to play.

Or it could be something concrete like clearing out the clutter in a room of your house. Or selling your car. Or even just taking down your Christmas tree and putting it on the street.

Or…maybe there are some things you would like to let go of, but you are not ready yet. Take a deep breath, and write it on your list.

As in, “I am willing to be willing to let go of _______, but I know that it is not time yet.”

Trust that you will know when it is time, and you will do it when you are ready.

Be gentle with yourself.
Small steps.
Deep breaths.

Finally,

What concrete action can you take to close the door on 2014?

This will symbolize your willingness to cross the threshold into the new year.  It does not have to be a huge ceremonial ritual.

Here are a few ideas:
Light a candle.
Burn some incense.
Take a bath or shower — as if you are washing away 2014 and clearing the way for something new.Go for a walk.
Unplug your devices for 10 minutes and sit quietly.

Make up your own end-of-year ritual…it is less about taking a dramatic action and more about doing something simple with intention.

And giving 2014 a good goodbye.

Happy New Year’s Eve!

Love,

Leahsignature

 

Thanks to my teacher and mentor Bari Tessler Linden for providing the inspiration for this ritual. Working with Bari in her year-long money school called The Art of Money has inspired and changed my life for the better.

Stay tuned for my next post on starting 2015 well.